Scanning the Headlines: Medical Liability

A bibliographic listing of recently published material related to medical liability.

Updated on November 30, 2017

Links to full-text articles are provided where available.
For information on obtaining print copies of articles, please call the AHA Resource Center at (312) 422-2050.

Moore, J., and Mello, M. (2017, Nov. 29). Improving reconciliation following medical injury: a qualitative study of responses to patient safety incidents in New Zealand. BMJ Quality & Safety. Vol. 26, Issue 10. Retrieved from:

Thiels, C., and others. (2017, Aug. 30). Medical malpractice lawsuits involving surgical residents. The JAMA Network. Retrieved from:

Terhune, C. (2017, Jan. 4). Leading republicans see a costly malpractice crisis - experts don't. Kaiser Health News. Retrieved from:

Ridgely, S., and others. (2017, Jan. 3). Progress at the Intersection of Patient Safety and Medical Liability. Santa Monica, CA: Rand Corporation. Retrieved from:

Black, B., Wagner, A., and Zabinski, Z. (2017). The association between patient safety indicators and medical malpractice risk: evidence from Florida and Texas. American Journal of Health Economics. 3(2):109-139. Retrieved from:

Mello, M., and Kachalia, A. (2016, Dec.). Medical Malpractice: Evidence on Reform Alternatives and Claims Involving Elderly Patients. Washington: MedPAC. Retrieved from:

Studdert, D., Bismark, M., Mello, M., and others. (2016, Jan. 28). Prevalence and characteristics of physicians prone to malpractice claims. New England Journal of Medicine. 374:354-362. Retrieved from:

Graber, M., Siegal, D., and others. (2015, Nov. 6). Electronic health record-related events in medical malpractice claims. Journal of Patient Safety. Retrieved from:

Ready, T. (2015, June 10). Surge in quality scores linked to drop in malpractice claims. HealthLeaders Media. Retrieved from:

Illingworth, MD, K., Shaha, PhD, S., Tzeng, T., Sinha, MD, M., and Saleh, MD, K. (2015, May/June). The impact of tort reform and quality improvements on medical liability claims a tale of 2 states. American Journal of Medical Quality. 30(3):263-270. Retrieved from:

Andrews, M. (2015, January 20). Mass. malpractice reforms offer faster, more open process for injured patients. Kaiser Health News. Retrieved from:

Santos, P., Ritter, G.A., and others. (2015, Q2). Decreasing intrapartum malpractice: targeting the most injurious neonatal adverse events. Journal of Healthcare Risk Management, 34(4), 20-27.

Rodwin, M.A. (2015). Why the medical malpractice crisis persists even when malpractice insurance premiums fall. Health Matrix, 25, 163-226.

Seabury, S.A., Helland, E., and Jena, A.B. (2014, Nov.). Medical malpractice reform: noneconomic damages caps reduced payments 15 percent, with varied effects by specialty. Health Affairs, 33(11), 2048-2056.

Waxman, D., and others. (2014, October 16). The effect of malpractice refomr on emergency department. New England Journal of Medicine. 371:1518-1525. Retrieved from:

Millman, J. (2014, October 15). Study: Don't expect big health-care savings from medical malpractice. Washington Post. Retrieved from:

Seabury, S., Helland, E., and Jena, A. (2014, October). Medical malpractice reform: Noneconomic damages caps reduced payments 15 percent, with varied effects by specialty. Health Affairs. Retrieved from:

Largest professional liability carriers. (2014, Sept. 22). Modern Healthcare, 44(38), 31.

Robeznieks, A., and Sandler, M. (2014, Sept. 22). Medical liability carriers feel effects of healthcare reform’s sea change. Modern Healthcare, 44(38), 2.

Rothberg, M., and others. (2014, September 15). The cost of defensive medicine on 3 hospital medicine services. Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA). Retrieved from:

Robeznieks, A. (2014, August 18). HHS memo on med-mal reporting could hamper mediation. Modern Healthcare. 44(33), 9.

Bixenstine, P.J., Shore, A.D., and others. (2014, July-August). Catastrophic medical malpractice payouts in the United States. Journal for Healthcare Quality. 36(4),43-53.

Jiam, L., and others. Surgical malpractice claims in the United States. Journal of Healthcare Risk Management. 33(4):29-34, Q2, 2014.

Jenkins, R.C., Smillov, A.E., and others. Mandatory presuit mediation: 5-year results of a medical malpractice resolution program. Journal of Healthcare Risk Management. 33(4):15-22, Q2 2014.

Beaulieu-Volk, D. Hidden malpractice risk: Patients' failure to follow up. FiercePractice Management. Mar. 11, 2014.

Allen, M., and Pierce, O. Patient harm: when an attorney won't take your case. Patient Safety. Jan. 6, 2014.

Sage, W.M., and Hyman, D.A. Let’s make a deal: trading malpractice reform for health reform. Health Affairs. 33(1):53-58, Jan. 2014.

Jenkins, R., Smillov, A., and Goodwin, M. Mandatory presuit mediation: 5-year results of a medical malpractice resolution program. Journal of Healthcare Risk Management. 33:15-22, 2014.

de Wit ME, and others. Supporting second victims of patient safety events: shouldn't these communications be covered by legal privilege? Journal of Law, Medicine, and Ethics. 41:852-858, Winter 2013.;jsessionid=09D05B59696A160BBB54F6DC00578449.f01t03

Beazley Group. (2013, October 29). High Risk Jurisdiction Severity Trends, Time to Closure & Obstetric Claims Trends. Retrieved from: [Press release:

Domino, K.B. Medical liability insurance: the calm before the storm? American Society of Anesthesiologists Newsletter;77(10):54-56, Oct. 2013.

Carrier, E., and others. High physician concern about malpractice risk predicts more aggressive diagnostic testing in office-based practice. Health Affairs. 32 (8). 1383-1391. Aug. 2013.

Harvey, H., and Cohen, I. The Looming Threat of Liability for Accountable Care Organizations and What to Do About It. JAMA. 310(2):141-142. July 10, 2013.

Davidson, P., and Murdock, T. Legal duties and avoiding liability: A nonprofit board member primer. Trustee Magazine. June 2013.

O’Reilly, K. Diagnostic errors are lead cause of medical liability payouts. American Medical News. May 6, 2013.

2013 medical malpractice payout analysis. Diederich Healthcare, May 2013.

Gallegos, A. Doctors win first safe harbor against ACA use in liability suits. Apr. 15, 2013.

Bixenstine, P., and others. Catastrophic medical malpractice payouts in the United States. National Association for Healthcare Quality. Mar. 29, 2013.

Arlen, Jennifer, Economic Analysis of Medical Malpractice Liability and Its Reform (May 9, 2013). NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 13-25; NYU Law and Economics Research Paper No. 13-15. Available at SSRN: or

Karash, J.A. Liability coverage at the crossroads. H&HN. Hospitals & Health Networks. 87(2):39-40, 49, Feb. 2013.

Physicians, surgeons spend as much as one-third of their career waiting for medical liability claims to be resolved. Medical Liability Monitor;38(2):5, Feb. 2013.

Cantlupe, J. Malpractice cases gobble 11% of doctors' time. HealthLeaders Media. Jan. 17, 2013.

Johns Hopkins patient safety researchers: surgical never events occur at least 4,000 times a year despite risk management efforts. Medical Liability Monitor;38(1):2, Jan. 2013.

Seabury, S. A., and others. On average, physicians spend nearly 11 percent of their 40-year careers with an open, unresolved malpractice claim. Health Affairs. 32(1):111-119, Jan. 2013.

Leigh, J., and Flynn, J. Enhance patient safety by identifying and minimizing risk exposures affecting nurse practitioner practice. Journal of Healthcare Risk Management;33(2):27-35, Quarter 4, 2013.

Wallace E., and others. The epidemiology of malpractice claims in primary care: a systematic review. BMJ Open. 2013.

Schwartz JC. A dose of reality for medical malpractice reform. NYU Law Revew. 88:1224-1307, 2013.

Johns Hopkins malpractice study: surgical 'never events' occur at least 4,000 times per year. Johns Hopkins Medicine Press Release, Dec. 19, 2012.

Murtagh, L., and others. Disclosure-and-resolution programs that include generous compensation offers may prompt a complex patient response. Health Affairs. 31(12):2681-2689, Dec. 2012.

Frese, R. C., and Kitchen, P. J. Perspectives on medical malpractice self-insurance financial reporting. hfm. 66(11):50-52, 54, Nov. 2012.

Gallegos, A. Medical liability payouts for surgeries vary widely by state. Oct. 29, 2012.

Gallegos, A. High court to determine states’ take of medical liability awards. Physician defendants might find it easier to settle lawsuits if Medicaid programs are limited in what they can collect from injured patients, legal experts say. American Medical News, Oct. 8, 2012.

Gallegos, A. Court refuses to decide constitutionality of state damages cap. Sept. 10, 2012.

Troxel, D.B. Medication-related errors and liability: what can you do? Medical Liability Monitor;37(9):8, Sept. 2012.

Cheung, K. States fear courts will overturn malpractice caps. FierceHealthcare. Aug. 13, 2012.

Missouri Throws Out Med-Mal Cap. States Split on Limiting Non-Economic Damages. Payers and Providers Publishing, LLC. August 7, 2012.

Hartocollis, A. Troubled New York hospitals forgo coverage for malpractice. New York Times. July 15, 2012.

Roser, M. New study: Tort reform has not reduced health care costs in Texas. June 20, 2012.

Bovbjerg, R., and Berenson, R. The Value of Clinical Practice Guidelines as Malpractice "Safe Harbors". Princeton, NJ: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Apr. 2012.

Francis A. Chilling new ways patients are suing doctors. Medscape Business of Medicine, Mar. 29, 2012. [free registration required to view]

Cantlupe, J. Truthful doctors may prevent malpractice suits. HealthLeaders Media. Feb. 16, 2012.

Medical Malpractice Payments Sunk to Record Low in 2011. Washington: Public Citizen's Congress Watch, 2012.

U.S. Tort Cost Trends. Chicago: Towers Watson, 2012.

McClellan, F., and others. Do poor people sue doctors more frequently? Confronting unconscious bias and the role of cultural compentency. Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research, 2012.